New York Red Bulls vs. Charlotte FC: How to watch, stream Eastern Conference Wild Card


The New York Red Bulls (No. 8 seed) host Charlotte FC (No. 9 seed) Wednesday evening in a single-elimination Eastern Conference Wild Card game, four days after both clubs secured last-gasp spots in the Audi 2023 MLS Cup Playoffs.

How to watch and stream



  • Red Bull Arena | Harrison, New Jersey

The winner advances to face Supporters' Shield champion FC Cincinnati in a Round One Best-of-3 series that starts Oct. 29 with Game 1. Game 2 is set for Nov. 4, then Game 3 (if necessary) arrives Nov. 11.

If the Wild Card game between New York and Charlotte is tied after regulation time, a penalty kick shootout will determine the winner (no extra time). Big picture, all clubs in the 18-team playoff field are building towards MLS Cup presented by Audi on Dec. 9.

  • Seed: No. 8 in Eastern Conference
  • Record: 43 points (11W-13L-10D)

The Red Bulls' 13-year playoff streak looked set to end Saturday evening at Nashville SC, only for Luquinhas to earn a penalty kick that John Tolkin dispatched in the 94th minute for a 1-0 victory. Other results went RBNY's way, and they now have made 14 straight postseasons – an MLS record and tops (active) across all major North American men’s professional sports leagues.

Head coach Troy Lesesne's group enters in fine form, going 4W-1L-2D to end the regular season and doing just enough to squeeze into the playoffs. But Lesesne, who took over in May after Gerhard Struber's exit, is preaching that qualifying isn't enough. RBNY, an MLS original club (then under the MetroStars moniker), are yet to win an MLS Cup. 

New York will hope their Carlos Coronel-anchored defense (39 goals against = fifth-best in MLS) continues to find lockdown mode. Their 36 goals scored are the fewest of any East playoff team, with Frankie Amaya and Omir Fernandez both boasting a team-leading 10 goal contributions.

  • Seed: No. 9 in Eastern Conference
  • Record: 43 points (10W-11L-13D)

An end-of-season scheduling quirk gave Charlotte a home-and-home series vs. Lionel Messi-led Inter Miami CF last week, and after a 2-2 draw Wednesday at DRV PNK Stadium, it seemed the Crown's nasty habit of late goals conceded would keep them out of the playoffs (MLS-leading 25 points dropped from a winning position).

But CLTFC, powered by Kerwin Vargas' 13th-minute goal and some late heroics from goalkeeper Kristijan Kahlina, held onto a 1-0 win over the Herons on Decision Day (Saturday) and other results fell their way. The second-year club, playing before 66,101 fans at Bank of America Stadium, booked their first-ever playoff trip.

Charlotte, the East's No. 9 seed, face long odds to make MLS Cup. But with game-changers like Poland international forward Karol Swiderski and captain Ashley Westwood, plus a four-game unbeaten streak (3W-0L-1D), head coach Christian Lattanzio's side may embrace the underdog role.

2023 Matchups: Regular Season